Terms & Conditions of entry to Discoveries 2020-2021

Women’s Prize Trust Discoveries, powered by NatWest, Curtis Brown and Curtis Brown Creative.




All references to:

“Curtis Brown” are to Curtis Brown Group Limited (company registration number 00679620), whose registered office is Fifth Floor, Haymarket House, 28-29 Haymarket, London SW1Y 4SP;

“Curtis Brown Creative” are to Curtis Brown Creative Limited (company registration number 08880058), whose registered office is Fifth Floor, Haymarket House, 28-29 Haymarket, London SW1Y 4SP;

“Women’s Prize Trust” are to Women’s Prize Trust (company registration number 03691656; charity registration number 1181253), whose registered office is 6 New Street Square, London EC4A 3DJ; and

“NatWest” are to National Westminster Bank Plc (company registration number 929027), whose registered office is 250 Bishopsgate, London EC2M 4AA,

together, the “Co-Promoters”, “us” or “we”.

All references to “entrant”, “entrants” or “you” refer to a person who submits an entry under this competition.


1.1. This competition runs from 16 September 2020 (the “Opening Date”) until 12 noon London time on 17 January 2021 (the “Closing Date”) (the period, the “Submission Period”), after which no further entries will be accepted as eligible.

1.2. The competition is free of charge to enter.

1.3. Entries must be submitted online using the Discoveries submission form (https://discoveries.curtisbrowncreative.co.uk/) which must be completed in full, including the entrant’s full name, contact telephone number, and email address. Entrants must paste the first 10,000 words of their novel and a synopsis of up to 1,000 words into the appropriate fields of the entry form.

1.4. The Co-Promoters do not accept responsibility for late or lost entries and shall not be held responsible for any inability to submit entries as a result of computer service, systems and or server failure, error, interruption, defect or delay or any other technical malfunction. Proof of sending is not proof of receipt.

1.5. Entrants consent to being contacted by the Co-Promoters in response to their entry, using the telephone number or email address provided with the competition entry.


2.1. The competition is open to women.

2.2. Entrants must be at least 18 years old at the time of entry and a resident of the UK or the Republic of Ireland.

2.3. Only one entry is permitted per entrant. Entries on behalf of another person will not be accepted. Joint submissions are permitted subject to both authors consenting to the submission being entered and agreeing to the Terms and Conditions of Entry.

2.4. Entrants must be unrepresented at the time of entering the competition (i.e. you should not already have a literary agent). Should you accept an offer of representation during the Submission Period and before the Announcement Date, you must let us know as soon as possible so that we can remove your entry from the competition. Failure to do so will mean that we have the right to withdraw your submission.

2.5. The competition is not open to employees, trustees or contractors of the Co-Promoters, or to any person directly or indirectly involved with the Co-Promoters (including its affiliates) or the running of the competition, or their direct family members.

2.6. In entering the competition, you confirm that you are eligible to do so and eligible to claim any prize you may win. The Co-Promoters may require you to provide proof that you are eligible to enter the competition.

2.7. For the avoidance of doubt, the competition is open to students and former students of Curtis Brown Creative’s courses.

2.8. For entrants who have applied for and have been accepted onto a Curtis Brown Creative three-month or six-month novel-writing course starting between 16 September 2020 and 1 June 2021, in the event of you being awarded the runner-up prize we will refund you the course fee that you have paid (up to a maximum of £1,800).

2.9. Entering the competition shall have no effect on any formal submission you may have made or may make to a Curtis Brown agent either during or after the Opening Date (for the avoidance of doubt, the competition and submissions to the agency are separate). 

2.10. Entrants must comply with these terms and conditions to be eligible for prizes. If there is any reason to believe that there has been a breach of these terms and conditions, the Co-Promoters may, at their sole discretion, reserve the right to exclude you from participating in the competition. 


3.1. Your entry must be written in the English language

3.2. Your entry must comprise of the opening (including any prologue) of a fiction novel intended for adults (i.e. not children or young adult fiction) of up to 10,000 words and a one-page synopsis of no more than 1,000 words. Entrants must paste their first 10,000 words of their novel and a synopsis of up to 1,000 words into the appropriate fields of the entry form.

3.3. Your submission text and synopsis must not have your name on it or any other marker which obviously identifies you as the author.

3.4. Your entry, as submitted – and the novel from which it derives – must be your own original work and must not violate the copyright or other rights of any third party.

3.5. Your entry can be of any theme, subject or genre.

3.6. Your novel does not have to be finished at date of entry.

3.7. Your novel must: be unpublished in print or online (whether via a publisher or through self-publishing); not have been broadcast; not have won a prize. Being published online includes, but is not limited to, publication on a personal blog.

3.8. Simultaneous submission to multiple competitions is permitted but if your entry wins a prize or is published elsewhere you must let us know as soon as possible so that we can remove it from the competition.


4.1. Discoveries 2020 will consider all entries on the basis of quality and originality of prose and narrative voice.

4.2. Judging of the competition will be in three stages:

Stage 1: All eligible entries will be read and judged against the competition reading guidelines. Readers will be from a mixture of backgrounds, with literary expertise, and drawn from across the Co-Promotor’s networks.

Stage 2: Twenty-five (25) entries will be put forward to the judging panel (this list is not officially published). The judging panel will read all twenty-five (25) stories.

Stage 3: A longlist of sixteen (16) entries will be chosen from the list of twenty-five (25).

Stage 3: The judging panel will together discuss and agree on the six (6) shortlisted entries from the longlist of sixteen (16). In reaching its decisions, the judges will adopt a preferential voting system. In the unlikely event of there being a tie, the Chairperson will have the casting vote. Shortlisted writers will be contacted personally by email or by telephone.

4.3. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

4.4. The judging will be fair and independent. The judging panel will be appointed by the Co-Promoters and will comprise literary professionals. All judges are required to declare any financial interests in relation to any entrants.


5.1. The prizes for the winner, runner-up, and four shortlisted entrants (together, the “prize-winners”) are as follows:

(i) First prize: an offer of representation made by Curtis Brown and £5,000.

(ii) Runner-up prize: a gratis place on a Curtis Brown Creative three-month novel-writing course commencing between July 2021 and February 2022 and a mentoring session (to be taken up within 6 months of the Announcement Date) with an agent from Curtis Brown’s literary agent team.

(iii) Four shortlisted entrants: a gratis place each on a Curtis Brown Creative six-week creative writing online course (available until February 2022) and a mentoring session (to be taken up within 6 months of the Announcement Date) with an agent from Curtis Brown’s literary agent team.

(iv) Ten longlisted entrants: a £50 discount each on a Curtis Brown Creative six-week creative writing online course (available until February 2022).

5.2. The prizes must be taken as stated and cannot be deferred (except, with regards to the writing courses only, strictly with the agreement of Curtis Brown Creative) or transferred.

5.3. None of the prizes can be exchanged for cash. For the avoidance of doubt, the novel-writing courses referred to in (ii) and (iii) above cannot be used as partial payment for any other Curtis Brown Creative novel-writing courses, with the exception of the refund referred to under the heading ‘Eligibility’ in respect of (ii).

5.4. In the event of their being selected, entrants consent to their full names and photograph (as provided with their competition entry) being made public in the announcement of the competition winner, runner-up and four shortlisted entrants on a date to be announced in June 2021 (the “Announcement Date”). Results will be announced by the Co-Promoters on their websites (https://www.curtisbrown.co.uk/) (https://www.curtisbrowncreative.co.uk/) (https://www.womensprizeforfiction.co.uk/) (http://natwest.co.uk).

5.5. The Co-Promoters will contact the prize-winners personally as soon as practicable on or after the Announcement Date, using the telephone number or email address provided with the competition entry.

5.6. The Co-Promoters will make all reasonable efforts to contact the prize-winners. If the prize-winners cannot be contacted or are not available or have not claimed their prize within seven (7) days of the Announcement Date the Co-Promoters reserve the right to offer the relevant prize to the next eligible entrant.


6.1. The Co-Promoters do not claim any rights of ownership in your entry.

6.2. Should you be a prize-winner, you agree that the Co-Promoters may, but are not required to, publish an extract of up to 2,000 words from your entry (such extract to be agreed between you and the Co-Promoters) for the purposes of publicizing and promoting the entry and the competition on the following websites: https://www.curtisbrown.co.uk; https://www.curtisbrowncreative.co.uk; https://www.womensprizeforfiction.co.uk/; and the NatWest website.

6.3. By submitting your novel the entrant agrees in the event of being shortlisted or winning the competition to undertake a mutually acceptable limited programme of activities to promote the competition.

6.4. The entrant agrees that they will contribute to publicity and promotional activities, including events, for the competition and hereby grant the Co-Promoters all necessary rights in their contribution for press/publicity activities for the competition for all media in perpetuity. The entrant agrees to obtain the Co-Promoters’ prior written consent before taking on any of its own publicity or promotional activity relating to their involvement in the competition. In the event that the entrant is informed that their novel has been shortlisted or won the award, the entrant must not publish or otherwise let it be publicly known of this fact (such as via online forums, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) until such time as the official announcement is made, failing which the competition team may at its sole discretion disqualify the entry and revise the shortlist and (if applicable) winning entry.


7.1. The Co-Promoters will only process your personal information as set out in the following link: https://www.curtisbrown.co.uk/page/privacy.


8.1. Entry into this competition will be deemed to be acceptance of these terms and conditions by the Entrant and agreement to be bound by them and confirmation that the Entrant has the necessary authority to enter into this competition. The Co-Promoters reserve the right to hold void, suspend, cancel or change this competition at any stage, if deemed necessary.

8.2. The Co-Promoters reserve the right to cancel this competition at any stage, if deemed necessary in their opinion, or if circumstances arise outside of their control.

8.3. The Co-Promoters reserve the right to refuse entry to the competition for any reason at their absolute discretion.

8.4. Entrants will be deemed to have accepted these rules and to have agreed to be bound by them when entering this comeptition. The Co-Promoters may at their sole discretion disqualify the entry and/or reclaim any award and revise the shortlist and (if applicable) winning entry, if they consider that the entrant has not complied with the terms and conditions contained herein (such as that the work is not original, fictional, and entirely the author’s own work).

8.5. Following standard industry practice, the Co-Promoters may undertake background checks (with the exception of criminal proceedings pending and unspent convictions) of the shortlisted finalists. Information discovered or that may have been disclosed by the entrants themselves will inform the decision as to the selection of the finalists. Disqualification will not be automatic but the decision is in the sole discretion of the Co-Promoters.

8.6. The entrant acknowledges and agrees that to the extent permitted by law, the Co-Promoters and any other person(s) in connection with the competition will not be liable for any loss or damage (whether such damage or losses were foreseen, foreseeable, known or otherwise) including financially and/or to reputation and/or disappointment, suffered by any entrant or publisher or agent on behalf of an author, entering the competition or as a result of accepting any competition.

8.7. These terms and conditions are governed by the laws of England and Wales and the parties submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales. This competition is void where prohibited by local law.